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Old 04-12-2010, 12:36 AM   #1
mattd2
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Default Fermenting in standard 5 gal cornies (3 gal batch)

So SWMBO will be taking the kids and herself to the inlaws later this week and I will be joining them at the weekend so I thought it would be a good time to get a few new/different things fermenting.
I was thinking of doing a Edworts Apfelwien and this ginger beer recipe Ginger "Beer" (with wine yeast)

But I only have 1 fermenting barrel, although I have just got my cornie kegs setup but no beer to put in them yet (3 kegs, QDs, tube, cobra taps).
I have seen some people fermenting in cornies but it seems that they are removing diptubes/pressure reliefs etc. and doing full ~5 gal batchs.

What I was thinking is to leave the cornie standard and just hook up a gas disconnect with some tube going into a blowoff jar and doing 2.5-3 gal batchs. Once they have done fermenting I was going to use CO2 to transfer the cider/"beer" to another cornie for carbing with priming sugar. I would use a liquid to liqid disconnet jumper to move the "beer" between kegs but somehow "dump" the yeast cake (and wash it) that will come out first.

Ok question time:
1) Any thing that is hugely obvious that I shouldn't do?
2) Is the headspace going to be an issue (too much/too little) and should I purge the keg with co2 (before or after pouring in the "wort")
3) Is it even worth moving it to a secondary keg to get it off the yeast cake (just though it might be benificial to help get a clearer end result since I would be carbing ontop of the yeast cake)

Thanks in advance!

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Old 04-12-2010, 07:29 PM   #2
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1) No, try it.
2) If the wort is 3 gallons headspace shouldn't be a problem, no need to purge, you will want to sanitize the keg though. Fermentation will purge the oxygen.
3) I would let it ferment completely, then transfer to another sanitized keg and either prime it or pressurize with co2, wait 3 weeks then drink. (unless you're using it for the apfelwijn of course)

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Old 04-14-2010, 09:52 PM   #3
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Ok I put the Apfelwein in last night, use a bit of keg lube to seal the lid, attached a gas QD to a blow off jar and it is sitting in my garage now. No sings of activity yet but we'll see when I get home from work tonight. I know my lid was not sealing all that well so I might not see anything at all, I'll give it a spray with water in a few days to see if anything is leaking out the lid!
Onto the ginger beer tonight!

Edit: Got home and it looks like there has been a little bit of activity, the gas is slowly inching its way down the tube!

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Old 04-22-2010, 01:35 AM   #4
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Update:
Got the ginger beer in the second cornie the next day (and a cooper's kit in the fermenter as well) and they are going strong.
Now I have been thinking about when I go to bottle these, my current plan is:
Carb
1) Disconnect blow off,
2) Prime with 1/2 the normal sugar use to bottle,
3) Connect CO2 and hit it with 30 PSI to seat lid,
4) Disconnect CO2,
5) Leave for 2 weeks to carb,
6) Cold crash in fridge for 3-5 days,
Bottle
7) Clean and sterilise bottles as usual,
8) Bleed pressure from keg,
9) Connect CO2 and party tap/bottling wand (with ~3' of 3/16" tube) to keg (CO2 @ ~2 PSI just to push),
10) Dump first drawings (yeast, etc) until clear,
11) Fill bottles slowly,
12) Cap on the foam,
Wash yeast
13) Pour cooled boiled water into keg,
14) Shake to mix up trub,
15) Tap trub/slurry into sterilised jars and wash yeast.

Any suggestions or comments on this? I think the ginger beer will be done fermenting next week so bottling will be 3+ weeks away still.
Cheers!

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Old 04-22-2010, 01:06 PM   #5
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Your sideways picture gave me an idea. My first time fermenting in a corny worked well, except when I went to rack off the yeast cake. I applied CO2 and plugged the dip tube. So, I am thinking the next time, keep the corny on it's side with dip tube up, so it does not get clogged with yeast cake. Or at least on a 45 so it forms on one side.

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Old 04-23-2010, 12:02 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pick View Post
Your sideways picture gave me an idea. My first time fermenting in a corny worked well, except when I went to rack off the yeast cake. I applied CO2 and plugged the dip tube. So, I am thinking the next time, keep the corny on it's side with dip tube up, so it does not get clogged with yeast cake. Or at least on a 45 so it forms on one side.
What pressure were you pushing it out at? Thanks for mentioning this as I think I am going to run into this as well. You do mean you plugged the dipp tube with sediment and nothing qould come out? What did you do to salvage it, open the keg up and rack into a bottling bucket?
Cheers
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Old 04-23-2010, 12:32 AM   #7
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Some people with kegs for fermenting will cut the dip tube to make it shorter to sit above the yeast. I would think a normal siphon and racking cane method would work best.

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Old 04-23-2010, 08:21 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carnevoodoo View Post
Some people with kegs for fermenting will cut the dip tube to make it shorter to sit above the yeast. I would think a normal siphon and racking cane method would work best.
Yeah I saw that but didn't really want to have kegs specific to fermenting in. I'll try my method above and see if it will work, might have to crank up the pressure!
Cheers guys.
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Old 05-01-2010, 05:00 PM   #9
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You don't have to have a specific keg, just the diptube. One diptube can be used in all of your kegs.

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Old 05-01-2010, 05:22 PM   #10
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I was pushing it out at 3 PSI. I just siphoned it out after it plugged, then took out the dip tube and cleaned it.

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